How I changed my skin and cured adult acne

Not the easiest post to share, but probably one I have been looking forward to the most. 

When I turned 25, my skin went to shit. Pardon my French, but I never really had acne growing up and all of a sudden my body decided to rebel against me and make me go through what I consider a self-confidence shattering nightmare. I started getting dozens (if not way, way more) pimples all around my mouth and jawline, big painful acne that would linger for weeks – and get replaced by even deeper ones when they finally decided they had enough. 
I remember going to bed crying, praying to wake up with a clear face, wondering what I did that got my skin so angry. To this day I have no idea what went on, but my biggest guess would be my hormones went out of whack. I had just stopped taking birth control, and gone through a pretty major life adjustment which had caused me a lot of stress, so who knows…
I tried everything to clear my face (my back got pretty bad too) : I bought literally every single over-the-counter products at the pharmacy, I went back on birth control, I went to see specialists who gave me all kinds of facials, I bought a blue light therapy wand (still use it once in a while), I stopped eating dairy (torture because I love cheese), I even talked to a doctor about Accutane (turns out my acne was not severe enough to consider it, but in my head it was!). NOTHING WORKED. Or maybe it did for a week, and then my acne adapted and came back twice as strong! I was devastated, cancelled so many plans with people for fear of judgment, spent $$$$ on my face, and just was at an all-time low when I’d wake up to find new pimples after I had just tried a “revolutionary” product I found at Sephora (any of you ever tried Kate Somerville’s sulfur EradiKate treatment? It has so many good reviews I was convinced it would work for me… it didn’t).

PS: I have one major regret about all this. I don’t have better “before” photos. These were actually a week into using the products that ultimately cleared my face – and I didn’t think I should take better ones because I didn’t really believe my skin would heal. Just to give you an idea: every where you see a red spot, I had a breakout in the previous days. My skin was bumpy, inflamed, and uneven. I wish I had better ones so that I could really see the journey my skin has been through – but this will have to do!

PPS: I feel the need to say that the “now” photos are 100% unedited. I don’t have a drop of makeup on my face, I hadn’t even washed my face after waking up before taking these photos.
I legit woke up like this.


Honestly, I strongly believe it is a combination of so many things. I am not saying they would 100% work for everyone, but they are almost all natural, and just easy changes you can make in your life that will help you.

1. Real U

One year ago I saw a friend on Instagram (the power of influencers!) post about this brand Australian brand called Real U. I went on their Instagram profile and they had all these before/after photos of people with terrible skin I felt it was worth a shot. I didn’t have my hopes high, because I had been let down by so many brands before – but I gave it a shot and emailed them. They kindly sent me their products and told me to give it a try for a couple of weeks. You guys, I was BLOWN AWAY. My acne had always been very angry (aka inflamed and very red), but the Real U products worked so gently I saw a difference in my skin within days. The brand uses no nasties like benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid (which irritates the face) and works on sensitive skin – plus it is vegan and cruelty free! I remember reading something the founder Ebony said “healthy skin heals faster” and that hit me. I had been guilty so many times of not applying moisturizer (trying to dry out those pimples), torturing my skin trying to pop those suckers,… but what she said really resonated with me and so I followed their program religiously. Here is what I use from them: I wash my face with this product and using this brand new face cloth (wash it twice if you’ve worn makeup during the day), I apply this spot treatment on my pimples (or places I tend to break out), I follow up with this gel all over my face (I prefer the red one when I can see pimples forming, and the green one when my skin is doing good), and end with this moisturizer all over my face and neck. Morning and night. I have re-ordered from the brand several times and will not allow myself to even come close to emptying a product if I don’t have another one to replace it with right away. It worked that well for me.

2. UFO by Sunday Riley

I don’t use this all the time, but try to every other day. All I will do is add 3-4 drops of Sunday Riley’s UFO (worth the splurge) into my palm and mix it with Real U’s moisturizer, and then apply all over my face. I don’t use any other oils, but there is something about this one that helps my skin to calm down – and it smells like heaven! I feel I pamper my skin every time I use it!

3. Green tea + hot water and lemon

Both help detoxifying the skin. I personally prefer lemon water with breakfast and green tea before bed (I take decaf). I just find it helps my skin from the inside out!

4. No alcohol

I almost 100% cut out alcohol from my life months ago. I will occasionally have a glass of wine or champagne if I am celebrating something, but other than that I stick to water or juices. When my mom came here a few weeks ago I let myself go and OMG MY SKIN HATED ME! Within a couple of days of drinking alcohol I had bad breakouts all around my mouth and jawline again. But once I stopped drinking my skin cleared within a week. I legit can tell the difference even after one drink – my skin looks dull and I can see tiny bumps coming from underneath. Very blah. Cutting out alcohol was one of the best things I did for myself.

5. Changing my pillowcase every 2 days

I slightly became paranoid with bacteria, and cannot sleep longer than two nights on my pillowcase. I even started sleeping on a towel until I realized it damaged my hair (so dry!). Now I change it every other day, and wash my sheets at least once a week. Might sound excessive, but sweat and body oils (not to mention your hair) get on your pillow and when you sleep on it everything gets clogged in your pores! Sounds so nasty, and it is. I highly recommend you start changing your pillowcase more often if that’s not something you already do – it is a life changer. To kill acne causing bacteria, I also use my blue light therapy wand (under $75) once in a while. It doesn’t help clear acne that’s already there, but it will get rid of the bacteria that cause acne to form in the first place.

6. No processed foods

I mostly cook at home every day, so it isn’t too hard to stay away from processed food. But when I go out and I don’t eat well I can see a difference in my skin. Foods with a lot of oil, sugar, gluten, salt,… they all have a bad reaction with my skin and aren’t worth the pain of waking up with deep rooted pimples on my face. So now I stick to fresh veggies and meat, I am not 100% gluten free but I do prefer gluten free pasta and bread, I also will allow myself candies once in a while but most of the time I try to stick to healthy meals. It can take a while to see results, but you’ll feel them before you see them trust me. You will have more energy, chances are you’ll also loose some weight, and your overall mood will improve every day! FYI I do eat dairy products considering I didn’t see any changes when I stopped – and couldn’t be happier about that! A life with no cheese is not a life I want to live.

7. Running

This is going to sound bad – and I apologize in advance if it offends anyone. But I cannot help myself from popping my pimples if I see they are ready and won’t go away on their own. I know, I know, so bad. I am lucky that so far I haven’t suffered from any scarring, and I do take very good care of my skin before and after popping a breakout. What I have found helps me with this is going for a run before. The intense exercise gets endorphins flowing into my body, my pores are open, and as soon as I am out of the shower I find my skin is a lot more receptive to being popped than when I don’t workout in advance. Of course, I always use tissues (NEVER use your bare nails), and make sure to cleanse the skin afterwards to let it heal and dry. Now I don’t do this often, only when I really can’t get rid of a pimple any other way – and I am always gentle on my skin. I don’t scratch, I don’t tear it open, I don’t “dig” into it. If a pimple isn’t ready to be popped you will feel it right away and then you have got to stop! Let it be and come back the next day.

I am not saying my skin is perfect now by any means! I still break out once in a while, especially during that time of the month. I still have some darker pigmentation where I got bigger pimples. My skin gets dry and peels if I don’t moisturize it enough. 

I think this is something I will have to deal with for the rest of my life (or at least for now), and that’s ok. Honestly, perfect skin doesn’t exist. We compare ourselves to women we see online – but we forget how easy it is to actually airbrush a pimple on photoshop! Imperfections are ok, even though I know how they can destroy your self confidence. I just really wanted to be open with you guys and share what I have gone through so far – so that you can maybe relate to it and see that it isn’t just you this is happening to.

Click on the photo below to see how my friend Michelle has changed her skin!



  • Jessica

    Love this 💕 I will for sure try out the 🍵 green tea❤️

    • Marie

      Do it! It isn’t my favorite tea taste, but it helps with everything from digestion to detoxing your skin (and organs)

  • alix

    Love this I will for sure try out the green tea

    • Marie

      Try it! It might take a few weeks to show a difference, but you will feel it right away!

  • Alix

    Have a wonderful day.

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